17 Apr 2019
Watch: Boston Dynamics' army of 'robo-dogs' hauls a real truck
SoftBank-owned robotics giant Boston Dynamics has long been showing off capabilities of its machines in some hilarious, sometimes even creepy, videos.
The company recently displayed how its Handle robot could deal with packages in a warehouse. And now, in another instance, it has shown an army of 'robo-dogs' hauling a truck.
Yep, that's right! A truck.
Let's take a look.
10 SpotMinis hauling a box truck
However, unlike before, the robo-dog wasn't alone; it had nine other siblings who all lined up like sled dogs and hauled a box truck across the parking lot of the company.
Truck in neutral gear, hauled uphill
While seeing a pack of robo-dogs hauling a truck is amazing in itself, this whole display gets even more intriguing when you find that the bots pulled this truck one-degree uphill.
Notably, there was a driver behind the wheel of the truck to prevent any unexpected accidents. But it was in neutral gear when the bots dragged it across.
All-electric SpotMinis can lift up to 14kg of payload
First unveiled in 2017, SpotMini is one of the first near-finished products from Boston Dynamics.
It is a battery-powered machine with 17 electrically actuated joints, 3D vision cameras, and a bunch of sensors for navigation.
However, compared to other robots by Boston Dynamics, SpotMini looks pretty small; it's nearly 3-feet-tall and can lift loads up to 14kg, which is half of its own weight.
SpotMini coming out of production
Boston Dynamics notes SpotMini robots would soon be available for a range of applications.
However, the company has neither revealed the price of the robot nor explained who will get the opportunity to purchase it - businesses or home users.
For businesses, SpotMini's use could involve warehouse jobs, but for home users, the question of utility still remains.
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Other bots in Boston Dynamics' family
Apart from SpotMini, Boston Dynamics has unveiled a range of robots, including the famous Handle and Atlas. The former looks like a polished dino which can move boxes, carry heavy loads while the latter - a humanoid - nails backflips and leaps over hurdles swiftly.